5 Differences Between Theses and Dissertations
Writing a Ph.D. paper is never easy. It is the most complicated assignment students ever have to work on. They need to know how the paper should be written, what rules should be followed, and how to distinguish some types of assignments that can be used interchangeably, like “thesis” and “dissertation.”
Sure, there are write my essay online services out there that can always help the students who mistake one notion for another. Still, without knowing the difference, there is a risk of ordering a wrong assignment, which will result in a loss of money as well. So, let’s go through the things that distinguish these two academic types of work.
Theses are usually written on abstract subject areas or the ones that do not allow for primary research:
Such areas as literature, education, and arts can also presuppose dissertation writing – these subjects overlap. Meanwhile, there is no point in writing a classic thesis on
- economics, etc.
The subjects above require some numbers and evidence that should be systematically analyzed, which means that a discussion of methods is needed (a Methodology chapter), hence the dissertation format.
So, why does a Methodology chapter automatically mean that you need to complete a dissertation? To begin with, the subject areas that are meant for thesis writing do not allow to formulate a particular methodology; the steps are rather vague and can be summarized in a passage.
Imagine describing the research philosophy of a paper on philosophy. That’s basically the whole point of the assignment, so why would you need a separate chapter on it? Any law paper is basically an analysis of what has already happened and been documented. It’s doctrinal research that doesn’t require a lot of explanations. All you need for it is a structured discussion on interrelated subtopics in the main body.
Of course, just like most academic assignments, both require Introduction and Conclusion, but the dissertation outline of the body is very rigid and specific.
- Literature Review – The author should cover the details that have been researched before, why they matter, and what information is missing or contradictory.
- Methodology – all the steps of the research process should be discussed here as precisely as possible.
- Results – the valuable part of the gathered information should be presented in this section.
- Discussion – what has been said in the Literature Review chapter needs to be compared to the results.
It may sound unfair, but theses require not so much red tape. Mostly, you need to agree with your supervisor on the topic and outline and submit drafts regularly. With dissertations, it’s much more complicated. If it’s a must to conduct primary research, you won’t be able to proceed before a committee approves your methods, pool of participants, and extra documents to be written by you.
Still, a thesis is not easy to write. First of all, it’s due to the reason that its length can exceed 100 pages. Few dissertations exceed 60; a standard one is around 40. At the same time, an 80-page thesis is a common thing for Ph.D. students.
On the one hand, it is needed to cover a topic in full. For example, addressing a problem related to historical events connected to the current ones is impossible without background information. All the aspects that triggered the events should be analyzed thoroughly and looked at from different angles for the student to stay objective.
On the other hand, one needs to be well-read on the subject to produce such a long paper while staying informative. Without knowing the context, they may repeat content over and over again or misunderstand a chunk of text and write total nonsense.
So, if you cannot dedicate enough time to delve deeper into the topic, pick a reliable academic assistance service with the help of an essay writing service review on NoCramming.com to be on the safe side. The more seriously you treat the subject, the better outcome you will get.
Finally, there are conclusions and recommendations to be made. The latter should be rather extensive to serve as a roadmap for the stakeholders. In dissertations, recommendations can be summarized in a couple of passages, while in theses, they can represent a whole chapter.
A thesis aims to summarize what’s already been told previously and what is happening now and analyze the information in a narrative form. It may require calculations and other data only in very specific cases that should be discussed with a supervisor, whereas it’s a common thing for a dissertation to be based on particular data. It explores the things that haven’t been explored previously, analyzes them, and brings new objective insights.
Type of Analysis
Narrative, comparative, and critical analyses, together with the doctrinal one, are the main types of thesis writing. As you can see, they sound rather abstract. When it comes to dissertations, there is a much greater variety that includes but is not limited to
- meta-analysis & meta-synthesis (systematic literature review);
- descriptive & inferential statistics;
- thematic analysis;
- content analysis;
- document analysis.
To sum up, each of these two assignments is complicated in its own way. They are not nearly the same thing, and this should always be remembered, especially when you ask a professional for help with your assignment. Whenever you’re not sure about what you’re meant to write, it’s always better to address your professor and clarify all the details. Good luck!
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